History of Right to Buy

Right to buy was introduced in the 1980 Housing Act. It was one of the government party’s “five tasks” to help people into owning their own homes. This policy allows local authority housing tenants to purchase their council homes at a significantly discounted rate. The government has recently announcing the goal to bring the option to housing association tenants as well. The conditions to be eligible have changed regularly. However, in general you need to have spent 3 years in the property and not own another. [1]

This scheme has seen success as since its introduction. 2,006,690 council homes have been sold from April 1980 to March 2022. 91% of recorded social housing sales as a result of this scheme. In 2021-2022, there were 14,006 social homes sold through the scheme. This was a major increase of 52% compared to 2020-2021 but, this was still an 8% decrease in relation to 2019-2020. [2] Unfortunately, there are a few negatives to this scheme such as some properties that fit the criteria for the scheme are now owned by private landlords, not social housing tenants. A study by the Chartered Institute of Housing [3] has validated this claim by finding 40% of Right to Buy properties sold are let out by private landlords as of 2022. [4]

So there is a short overview on the history of right to buy. If you are looking to buy your council house, take al look at right to buy solicitors to help you with the process.


[1] https://lordslibrary.parliament.uk/right-to-buy-past-present-and-future/#:~:text=the%20local%20authority.-,1.2%20Housing%20Act%201980,to%20buy’%20their%20own%20home.

[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/social-housing-sales-and-demolitions-2021-22-england/social-housing-sales-and-demolitions-2021-22-right-to-buy-sales#:~:text=14%2C006%20sales%20of%20social%20housing,%25%20compared%20to%202019%2D20.

[3] https://www.cih.org/bookshop/uk-housing-review-2023

[4] https://www.pbctoday.co.uk/news/planning-construction-news/right-to-buy-scheme-what-are-the-pros-and-cons/114350/


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